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  #1  
Old 04-13-2004, 11:00 PM
Jenners Jenners is offline
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Talking Truck Drama (long winded but funny)

Hi there-

I am actually in Alabama, but this loser state doesn't seem to have its own "chapter" plus I am near GA, being in Auburn. So I thought, why the heck not, right??

OK, so here I go: I just bought a 1995 F350 Powerstroke Diesel. Four wheel drive, off-road, all that. Big momma-jomma. It's been rednecked a little bit (I bought it in Texas, there ya go), has like a lift kit shocks kinda thing (not sure on terminology, but know what they are). Also has had a CB radio put in very poorly, as in they cut the bottom of the dashboard off, the ijits, and there are a ton of wires that seem to just...well...end. No where.

Anyways! I am having a whole barrel of issues, especially seeing I have only had it about a month. My story you ask? OK, bought the truck off eBay. Mistake numero uno, I know, but was a good deal! Still is, really. Was under blue book, and the seller had good feedback (I know why now, will get to that in a minute). OK, so I fly in. He picks me up from the airport in the truck, and while driving to the dealership the O/D light starts flashing and the truck goes out of O/D doing like 55+. He tries to say it is something about a speed sensor (unless you can't tell, I am a girl under 30 and look it), but I kinda look at him like "I'm not stupid" and he gives me a 30-day auto transmission warrenty only. I am good to go, I drive it the 600 some odd miles back to Sweet Home Alabama *gag gag* with minimal issues and tranny only acted up once on Interstate 12 (O/D light flashed) and once on Interstate 65 (O/D light and shifted out of O/D, chug chug then was OK). So I get it home, go to bed and call Carl Gregory Ford in the AM to set up an appointment for it get the diagnostic run on it and non-tranny stuff fixed (the Texan said he wouldn't pay dealership costs). So, I go out Monday to start it to take it to CG Ford, and it's a no go. Not starting. Not a dead battery, though the idea crosses my mind that one of them is just not spinning the cylinders fast enough to get the fuel in there. Sooo...it gets towed in. Prognosis: water in fuel, the water seperator element needs to be replaced and that whole thing cleaned out; then when they take that out, they see that the fuel heater is broken and call for that to be replaced which I give a . When it got towed in, I asked the wrecker who he recommended for tranny stuff. I can't remember the name of the wrecker company, it is in Opelika and is something starts with a T and sounds like Triphasic (but I think that is actually a brand of birth control, ha). He recommends a place in Opelika called Metro Transmission, so when I get trucky-poo back I run it over there. Meanwhile, I am fighting with Texan about him paying AND sending me the darn title. He blackmails me into giving him good feedback before he agrees to pay (grrr), I was going to give neutral because he was hard to deal with (hung up on me once on the phone). Anyways...get the truck back and am so happy! Tickled pink, all listening to music and grinning and seat dancing, you get the picture. I run home to AU (about 10 miles) and then down I-85 to Montgomery (about 40 miles) and get off at my exit and BAM, tranny slips big time and sets a code (hard shift, like whiplash). Light goes flashy-flashy and Jenny is not a happy camper. I call Metro Tran, guy is shocked and tells me to bring it in Monday. Roger that. I drive it that weekend, it shifts hard the whole time. Blah. Monday comes and we have a frost warning Sunday night. Gets down to about 35. Riiiight...trucky no start again. Sounds like the same problem to me, so I sit out in the truck and cry and read the book and cry on the phone to Dad, dealership, Dad again, dealership again, Mom and towing service. It was pitiful. Dad tells me to "pick a tire, any tire, and kick the "poop" outta it." Dealership tells me sit back "have a Coke" and wait an hour. Um, I bought the truck to drive myself, my 16 foot horse trailer with horsey and worldy belongings (well, some of them) to WA State. So I wait. Nope, still a cranky truck (Pun not intended until I re-read, tee hee). So I cry some more and wait for wrecker. He finally gets there at 5PM (he had a blown tire on a truck he was hauling to Columbus). I wave my hands and gripe and moan, which changes to calling my truck sexist when it started right up for him. So I drive it to CG Ford, and it shifts fine the whole way. I get there, they promise to do their thing and I go home and cry some more. Hey, I was hormonal. They call me the next morning asking if I am delusional because it started right up for them, but then I get them to fess up that they parked inside the garage the night before. So they keep el trucko for another night. Call me the next morning and tell me the glow plugs are "marginal" and want $1500 to replace glow plugs, relay and pigtail Yeah right. I tell them I will be there to pick it up, and I call around Montgomery and find a place that will do it for much less. So I pick it up and drive to bank in Auburn, tranny still fine (Ford place said tran didn't code, either, so I am like, OK, possessed tranny fixed itself, right?) and drive down interstate back to Montgomery. Everything is hunky-dory until I get off at the same exit. Tran slips, RPMs go way high (like 3.3 on tach) but shifts smooth as a baby's bottom. Does this while I run errands around town, but gets better and better until you would never know there is a problem when I drop it off at the place to fix glow plug stuff. Never flashed light either. Whatever. Will be picking it up tomorrow (Wed) hopefully. Meanwhile, I had called the tranny guy and told him the deal about the glow plugs, and he said no problem and to bring it in whenever, because there is a 6 mos, 6K mile warrenty on the transmission he put in. OH! Shoot, before I forget, some need-to-know. The truck now has 200K miles on it, and I found paperwork in the glovebox for a tranny rebuild at 143K miles at Some Guy's Transmission Shop in Orange, Texas (not actual name of shop).

Any random thoughts would be appreciated. Even if they are just "Hey, you got ripped off, dumb girl" stuff, though I might return the favor. My current plan of action is to get my trucky-poo back (by the way, I had a F150 that I loved and adored and had for six years and I called it trucky-poo, but I totalled it last summer, and yes I have pictures if you're interested they are great, just email me) and drive it around for a week or so, replace tires and that kind of stuff and see what the transmission does. I don't know if it could be the high speeds or cruise control (doubtful, but...), so when I drive interstate I am going to alternate using and not using cruise.

Hit me with comments, I am just kinda...in the Trucky-Poo Twilight Zone or something...*snicker*
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  #2  
Old 04-14-2004, 11:06 AM
WastegateChad WastegateChad is offline
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Well I hate you've had so many problems but considering you bought a truck with 200K on it odometer it's kinda expected to run into that stuff. I hope you get everything worked out. Maybe the truck doesn't like being called Trucky poo and that's why it's giving you problems. j/k
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  #3  
Old 04-14-2004, 09:41 PM
Jenners Jenners is offline
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Ah, well. That might it, this is a pretty tough looking truck.
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  #4  
Old 04-22-2004, 08:07 PM
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Freighttrain Freighttrain is offline
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Ok,I am not up to speed on the powerchokes(ZZZZZZIP,NOMEX FLAME SUIT ON) but I am on the IDI(Pre power stroke version of your truck).I have a 1994 Crew Cab dually and have gone though 2 trans rebuilds in 100K.I know in 1994 the automatic was a E4OD and the design has Issues.Major issues.Very wimpy design due to being fords 1st electronic tranny.Well,the hard shifting is normal when the computer gets a fault code.Called Limp mode(For Limp it on home).The computer get a bad signal from a sensor(either loose wire,bad sensor,or a sensor has found something actually wrong).Have the shop drop the pan and check for chunks as the torque converter(just in case you don't know,Clutch for an automatic basically) is really poorly designed.Good old Ferd assembleds the innerds by folding a metal tab over to hold it together.The TC tends to lob a fin and in turn does ugly things to those aluminum Planetary gears inside the tranny(Or gets sucked into a valve body and keeps it from closing temporarily).If you want trouble free tranny operation and money ain't that big of a problem get a Brian's Truck Service(or is that Shop?) tranny for around $3500.They make some ungodly strong E4ODs by basically redesigning them.They can handle over 800Horse power.You can have it rebuilt locally usually for around $1000-2500 depending on what grenaded or you can get a Jasper Rebuilt jobber for around $1500 that has some upgrades and should to good if you don't go nuts upgrading the engine for Mega Horse power.If your just going to leave the truck stock or maybe a few upgrades(Chip,intake,exhaust) then the Jasper jobber is best.Now if your going to rod it out and run 14s and 15s at the drag strip you gotta get the BTS job.

Now,as for the engine.There is a little known thing with the 7.3L(Both IDI and Powerstroke) called Cavitation.The hard core guys and Gals know about it but the newbies and casual drivers don't thanks to Ford neglecting to put it in the owners manual.First thing I would do is head over to a big rig shop or a International dealer and get a couple of Coolant Test strips.Make sure they are in a pack(sealed in bottle or packet like ketchup packets).These thing will go bad if exposed to the open air for a few minutes.And they have a use by date on the bottle/pack so make sure they are fresh.To test you just get a sample of coolant from the radiator(not the puke tank),dip the strip in the coolant and wait 30 seconds.Compare to the chart to make sure you have enough coolant additives.Without this additive the coolant will eat a hole right though the Cylinder wall causing hydrolock(Water fills Cylinder,Piston tried to go up and either rod turns into a swizzle stick,blows the head off,or just stops the motor.If you turn the key one day and it acts like the engine locks up don't keep trying to turn it.The starter is strong enough to bend a rod.But if the SCA additive has been kept up to par there is a 90% chance you will never have to find out what a new engine cost.

Another thing,Don't use just good old green antifreeze.Used diesel rated Low Silicate antifreeze and add some SCA till the readings show good on the test strips.

Too bad you didn't get a nice Turbo IDI(sorry gotta rub it in,my fellow BOOBs<Brotherhood Of Oil Burners-IDI bunch) would draw in quarter me if I didn't rag a Powerstroke owner)Glow plugs are $9 each(8 total),wiring is like $180,controller is $120.Then 2 or 3 hours of shop labor.Injectors is really where it will hit ya. $205 each for reman powerstrokes and $275 each new.Hee hee hee,Mine are only $32 each.Neener neener neener.....Ok,enough of the playful ribbing.I will admit(god I hope the guys ain't watching) that I would love to have a power stroke but there is no way I could afford to repair it or be able to easily repair it like my good old Mechanical IDI(No electronics period!Except for tranny puter)

But if you take care of the PS it will last for a very long time.Some have lasted over 400K with no rebuild.And speaking of rebuilds....if you ever have to,Get a engine that has had all 8 cylinders sleeved.Almost does away with the cavitation issues and next time you have to get a rebuild(in 200-400K miles) it will be easier and cheaper.Yank the old sleeve,slide in new ones like the big rigs.
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  #5  
Old 04-23-2004, 11:00 AM
Jenners Jenners is offline
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Hey-

Wow, info overload! Thanks a whole bunch, I'll probably cut and paste this to my Word stuff and hold on to it for future reference.

Yeah, it's got an E4OD in it, it is what it had before the rebuild I got and the paperwork for the first one (before I got the trucky) says the same thing. Soooo...tell me more about this other transmissions. I've never heard of them. I am NOT into aftermarket crap, no dragging *** or stupid **** like that. In fact, I am spending change trying to get her back to factory specs right now as it is (yanking nasty ole mudder tires and seriously considering taking a blow torch to the damn lift kit).

Speaking of lift kits...anyone here know anything about them? As in, removing the suckers? This one has, oh, I'd say about a three, three and half inch lift. Not sure if there are different kinds, but I know the shocks are uber stiff? hard? bouncy? whatever. I am going to be pulling a gooseneck horse trailer and have two concerns: one being that I don't think I can fit her under the tongue yet and two that the bounciness will be serious unappreciated by my ponies. Anyone have any info on this?? I want to carfax the truck just so I can smack the rednecks that abused this otherwise nice truck.

Thanks again Man!

J
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  #6  
Old 04-23-2004, 04:38 PM
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Freighttrain Freighttrain is offline
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The Brians Truck service and Jasper are all still just good ol E4ODs just with some upgrades.Brians makes them bullet proof,Jasper makes them just reliable.You would be hard pressed to blow either of them up.Since this truck will only be a cruiser and tower I would get a jasper.Ford really didn't design these thing too well due to time constraints.They had to have something to meet gov't red tape.Later Ford took most of the upgrades and the original design and built a new tranny.Forgot the name but it was in the later year Powerstrokes and gassers(Think 97 or 98 for the PS).The reasons for the E4OD trannys failure is the oiling system.The fluid must get pumped from the Torque converter on the front all the way to the back without any hard lines.There is one support bushing in the middle and when it start to wear the pressures start to drop and the rear of the tranny gets starved for lubrication.Bad things happen to spinning metal chunks when the few microns of oil between them suddenly disappears.But,this is one thing Jasper upgrades,They put a line going from front to rear so fluid can make it back there even after the tranny start to wear.
Another boo boo was the use of aluminum carriers for the Planetary gears.Aluminum gets brittle when it is worked and tends to break.I think Jasper replaces them with steel carrier Planets.
Finally,The Torque converter.The really dumb boo boo.Ford didn't weld the guts,they just folded the metal together with slots and tabs.not sure what Jasper sends but they say the front plate is thicker so it isn't a stock ford.But the price has gone up since I got a local rebuild.It is now $2300 and you have to have it installed.

There is another option.....You could drive all the way up here to Gadsden and have Frost Transmission rebuild your tranny.They did mine for $1500.Only took 2 days.They had to basically change over ALL the junk I have spoke about in both posts.They do great work and even let me walk back to see my tranny.....or what was once my tranny.They had it spread out on 2 tables and 3 Grocery carts.What ever you decide,get a shift kit put in it.It will make it shift a little harder(but no where near as hard as the Limp mode your so in tune with right now) but it gets rid of another problem with the E4OD.The sluggish,slow shifts that tend to create A LOT of heat which burns the fluid.
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  #7  
Old 04-23-2004, 07:35 PM
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F2504x4 F2504x4 is offline
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i just wanted to jump in and add my .o2's {yes i know i'm an out of stater, but fords know boundies } i had a 95 F-150xl sc 4x4long bed 5.0 E4OD trans.
i tow and show equip, i have a 18ft cronkite trailor w 5000lbs of tractor.
i bought the truck with 40,000 miles on her, had it 5yrs and put 370,000 miles onit, two engines and other misc stuff, But i never touched the tranny except fuild changes and yes it did have the shudders, but that disappeared after 2 fluid changes, i did not baby the truck, i drove it hard, even while towing that weight, the e4od is a solid transmission, i just bought another truck and it has the same tranny, i will stand by this tranny, it is a solid perfoming transmission, yes there maybe some that will fail, but over all it is rock solid, now my with who is a courier driver bought a 94 E-250 5.8 E4OD with 70k on it , and put over 400,000 on that transmission, no issues, she now has a 99 E-250 with the 5.4 w/ E4OD its up to 175,000 miles now, no signs of failure, i'm not disputing that there may be problems, But i will stand behind what i've had and have, thanks this it is not meant or intended to flame anyone.
so freightrain this where you been hiding
, you can remove the flame suit, they still get hot, even when there's no flames. unless you just like to sweat.
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Old 04-23-2004, 07:48 PM
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Freighttrain Freighttrain is offline
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Thumbs up

actually I am a new freighttrain.I noticed there was another after I created this log on but the other guy has a space between Freight and Train.Oh well,Hope he doesn't get too protective of his log on!I use this one for about every board I come up on since it is my CB handle(which originated for my enjoyment of Model Railroading and Railfanning).The only other boards I post to that pertain to trucks is The Diesel Stop(which I would suggest for Jenners since the guys over there are VERY knowledgable.....Not saying the guys here are not as smart,I just use TDS for 99% of all my problems....and upgrade suggestions.Plus,it is a lot easier to use.Not as many Micro Forums like here.http://www.ford-trucks.com

On the E4OD,I think it has more to do with the power plant it is hooked too.Maybe the diesel has too much torque for it since the gassers seem to hold up well.But,One suggestion I will make before getting a total rebuild is make 110% sure it isn't just a connection.We have a lot of troubles there in IDI land.Sometimes teh IDI guys will just have to unplug each wire connector and clean the terminals(both wire end and trans socket) then slather some conductive grease on the connector.Most of the time that fixes it.
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Old 04-23-2004, 09:21 PM
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F2504x4 F2504x4 is offline
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i didnt notice the the spelling differance till after i posted, and also the avator's are differant to, {ohio}freightrain is a good guy, has a good sence of humor.{but don't tell him i said that} anyways thanks for the info, on the trans, i'm always willing to learn, well i'll go back to my state now......oh yea how hot does that NOMEX suit get?.......
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Old 04-23-2004, 09:38 PM
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Freighttrain Freighttrain is offline
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Very.Need to take a little trip over to IDI land and cool off.....even though I think I am on the black list since I bought a gasser......BOOB members are very particular about what goes in the tank.....And for god sake,never bring up powerstrokes!But with all that aside.....

When the tranny starts to act up does any of the guages go south on ya?On the IDI there is a tach sensor and when it goes out or if a chunk of metal get stuck to it(magnitized) it makes the tranny go nutz and on the IDI there is a sensor on the injection pump(Powerstrokes ain't got an injection pump so not sure where yours it) that is basically a Throttle position sensor.It is adjustable and if it is out of wack the tranny will down shift well before it is suposed to or not down shift period if you romp on it to pass a slower car.


And just in case you gotta drop another tranny in there(Highly unlikely) make sure it came from a diesel.A gasser won't work.The gearing ratios are all totally different....Except 3rd I think is the same.1:1 direct drive ratio.
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Old 04-24-2004, 11:39 PM
Jenners Jenners is offline
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Actually...I don't think my trucky is in Limp mode. Can't a new tranny just need break-in time? Because it is driving/shifting/running fine. Shifts at the correct time now, shifts smoothly (maybe a tiny jerk into second or into third, but hello, it's 10 years old), and seems A-OK. Maybe I'm just dreaming, but it really seems fine. Plus, last time it was in Ford Stealership (with current tranny), they said it did NOT code P1728 for the tranny, in fact it was all clear (P1111). I saw the paperwork. Someone who knows cars told me they can fix themselves, and someone else told me sometimes they just need to break-in and all that.

I am still going to take it by the shop that installed my last one for him to check out and I am going to tell him the whole messy story (maybe bat my eyes and wiggle my foot, too) and tell him all the symptoms thus far. See what he says about it. Sound kosher?

Jenn

Last edited by Jenners; 04-24-2004 at 11:41 PM. Reason: I'm a retard that can't type at midnight...
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Old 04-25-2004, 01:26 AM
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Freighttrain Freighttrain is offline
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well,I know on my truck the tranny computer didn't store any codes so when I shut it down it was ok till the computer detected a problem.It takes 3 "malfunctions" to set off the idiot light and put it into limp mode.The 3 problems must be the same thing.3 different detections won't set off a code.Has to be 3 TC slippages or whatever.You would know the limp mode if you had it.The OD light flashes and it really slams into gear.Sometimes it won't shift till the RPMs are way up there.I know you said it fell out of gear one time and redlined.Did you have your foot to the floor or near it at?If so that would be normal also.Passing gear.If the OD light starts flashing take it to a shop ASAP and do not shut it down.Have them check the codes while it is running since shutting it off will reset the codes......atleast it does on my IDI.These trucks are great but when they have a problem they will drive you nuts as you have seen.Good thing is when you get it back to normal they usually won't have another problem for a while.I have 100K on mine and have replaced nothing till just a few months ago when I replaced the injectors and glow plugs.Right now I am in the middle of replacing the heads since my guides are worn out(got the classic Woofing sound in the exhaust).Think I might have damaged them when I was comming back from Dothan and didn't let out of the throttle till I hit montgomery.80-90 all the way before I got a Pyrometer and boost guage(Highly advisable even on a non-tweeked truck)
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Old 04-25-2004, 11:25 AM
Jenners Jenners is offline
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Well, it was in Limp mode, hard shifting and high RPMs...but it has not done it since it did it on one weekend. Fine since then. Sooooo, I dunno! It seems A-OK now. Questionable, but I have no idea what else to do. Going to take it back sometime this week, I think, and talk to the guy.
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Old 05-05-2004, 11:02 AM
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Jenners,

Been sitting in the back ground observing and reading the posts about your new acquisition while I am doing time in Iraq. Did you get any resolve from the return visit to the shop?
As a side note you can contact e-bay management and report the shyster texan's aditude about his sale and they can take action against him.
Anyway I hope everything is starting to gel for you and that it didn't put to much of a damper on your planned trip to WA. Give us an update.
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Old 05-05-2004, 11:14 AM
Jenners Jenners is offline
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Well...he had a guy look at it, said it looked OK and the fluid was good to go. *shrug* I described what it had been doing, and he seemed to agree with the idea that the new tranny and old engine just had to adjust to each other.


I contacted eBay, they were as helpful as a tit on a boar. LOL. They responded by asking me if I had brought this up to the seller, because a lot of times it is "miscommunication" between buyer and seller. I write back and said, basically, oh, we communicated all right. He told me to leave good feedback or pay. I then told them to try reading my email closer and addressing the actual issue. NO response from them, and none from him. I've pretty much washed my hands of it. I just hope he doesn't rip off anyone else like he did me...

What are you doing in Iraq? Enlisted or Officer? If you're sitting around and have Internet access, I'm betting O. ;-) I have a AF friend in Qatar right now, and he is bored as well. But he gets to eat cool food all the time, I'm so jealous!

Take care!
J
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Old 05-05-2004, 11:14 AM
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